Isaac and Ede Antique Prints
Watson Reynolds Polly Kennedy

Thomas Watson after Sir Joshua Reynolds

Polly Kennedy

14 x 19 inches

A three-quarter length mezzotint, rare proof before title, by Thomas Watson after Reynolds; published in London in 1771.

Polly Kennedy was an Irish born actress and courtesan who came to England and performed upon the London stage. She caught the eye of Sir Charles Bunbury, the baronet and politician, and soon became his mistress. Reynolds is said to have been captivated by Miss Kennedy's looks and wrote in a letter to Bunbury that her face has "more grace and dignity than anything I have ever done".

This mezzotint is also remarkable for its depiction of textiles. Upon one plate Watson captures the feel of ermine, satin, silk and brocade.


Back to Catalogue